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Treatment Orthopedics

Osteoarthritis of the Hip

While you can't reverse the effects of osteoarthritis, early treatment may help you avoid pain and disability and slow progression of the disease. Surgery may help if your condition is already severe. If you have early stages of osteoarthritis of the hip, the first treatments may include:

  • Resting your hip from overuse
  • Following a physical therapy program of gentle, regular exercise like swimming, water aerobics or cycling to keep your joint functioning and improve its strength and range of motion
  • Using nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory medications like ibuprofen for pain
  • Getting enough sleep each night

In later stages of osteoarthritis, your hip joint hurts when you rest at night or your hip may be severely deformed. Your doctor may recommend total hip replacement surgery or arthroplasty. A two-piece ball and socket will replace your hip joint. This will cure your pain and improve your ability to walk. You may need crutches or a walker for a time after surgery. Rehabilitation is important to restore your hip's flexibility and to work your muscles back into shape.

UCSF Health medical specialists have reviewed this information. It is for educational purposes only and is not intended to replace the advice of your doctor or other health care provider. We encourage you to discuss any questions or concerns you may have with your provider.

Recommended reading

Preparing for Hip Replacement Surgery

If you and your surgeon decide that hip replacement surgery is the best treatment, our medical team will give you the info you need to prepare. Learn more.

Recovering from Hip Replacement Surgery

The typical hospital stay after hip replacement is one night, but some patients stay longer, while others go home on their surgery day. Learn more here.

Seeking care at UCSF Health

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